If you are a parent who has not had any experience with speech therapy services for your child, the process can seem quite overwhelming. From the moment you begin having concerns about your child to finding a site for services to having an evaluation completed, there are many questions to answer. After you have navigated through the above steps, the next part of the journey is the speech therapy sessions themselves. You may be wondering, “What do therapy sessions look like?” and “What should I expect during the first session?” Below you will find information to help answer these questions and more.
Before the Speech Therapy Session:
While in the waiting room, you may wonder if you should accompany your child to the treatment room or have your child exert independence and go on his own. This is a question that is best directed to the child’s specific clinician. There are many factors that affect the answer to this question including the child’s age, level of attachment, and ability to actively participate in treatment tasks.
During the Speech Therapy Session:
If you have never seen treatment in action, you may be wondering how the clinician targets your child’s goals. In pediatric speech therapy, goals are commonly woven into play and targeted by utilizing motivating activities and objects to the child. This is especially common during the first few therapy sessions because building a trusting relationship between the child and therapist is one of the most important goals. Not to mention getting to show the child that therapy is fun!
After the Speech Therapy Session:
The session is over and the clinician has reviewed the content of the session with you, or you were present in the room to experience it firsthand and you are receiving feedback from the clinician. Now what? Ask questions, such as “How can I support my child’s speech goals at home?” The clinician should provide practice tips and activities for you to complete at home with your child.
Speech therapy sessions are not meant to be a mysterious or overwhelming event, but rather a supportive and inclusive experience for your child and your family. If you think your child may have speech and/or language difficulties, consult a speech language pathologist today.
NSPT offers services in Bucktown, Evanston, Highland Park, Lincolnwood, Glenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!